Thursday, 22 December 2011

Fran and Nathan's Wedding

We had the pleasure of being a part of our friends Fran and Nathan's wedding day on 3rd December, in Exeter. Their joyful ceremony in Belmont Chapel had a festive touch when during the signing of the register a choir started singing Christmas carols spontaniously (reminded me of a scene from Love Actually!).

With nearly 300 guests the atmosphere was buzzing! After the ceremony we all had tea and cakes, a warming treat that showed the community spirit of the event as the cakes had been made by friends.

They had a lively reception in the fabulous function rooms at Exeter Castle, which were decorated with bunting and fairy lights which looked magical.

There was a lovely personal touch to everything and their scrabble theme was cleverly used in many ways (as you can see below in my instagrammed pics!).

Handmade order of service booklet

 The happy newlyweds

 The wedding VW!

Exeter Castle

Handmade bunting bar

 Amazing room lit with fairy lights and bottles as candle holders

 Amazing scrabble themed wedding cake

 The Groom's cufflinks

Gifts thoughtfully wrapped

Congratulations Fran and Nathan!

More scrabble ideas...

Cut out the letters to make your own words for messages on cards!

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Save the date (for under £20)

I did consider being more eco and economical by sending 'Save the date' emails to family and friends, but I like the idea of putting one up on the fridge/calendar/mantel, so in the end we chose small cards with a small cost - under £20! I was keen to make our 'Save the date' match our invitations, so we had to choose our overall design way in advance. I love handmade prints and needed one that could be 'mass produced' easily, so I was happy when I found a pretty design in the form of a wood block!

Antique Indian Wood Floral Print Block  from

My print using burgundy acrylic paint

A selection of the print to use on the card design

On I created 'business card' size cards by uploading this image for the front, and adding our 'Save the date' text to the back. A box of 50 cost around £12, so with small envelopes and stamps these came to under £20!

The finished cards ready to post!

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Our wedding cupcakes

While I'm on the topic of cupcake toppers, here are the cake toppers from our wedding cake! I printed these by hand using hand carved rubber stamps bought from Craft Pudding on Etsy. We also printed our Thank You cards with the same faces!

We chose chocolate cupcakes over a white iced traditional cake, because we both love chocolate and I often make brownies for my hubby! We have Karen's Cakes in Paignton to thank for making our delicious wedding cupcakes. Karen came to our rescue and managed to squeeze making these in at short notice and everyone loved them!

Mum and I made the cake stand using silver cake rounds/boards with my wedding ribbon pinned on. The levels are made using polystyrene cake rounds which can be bought from cake suppliers - I bought mine from Crafty Cakes in Exeter. We made this for around £30 which is less than it costs to hire a plastic cupcake tower stand!

Wedding photos credit Lumen Photography

Friday, 18 November 2011

Wedding cupcake toppers {free printables}

Last weekend I made cupcakes for our friends' double 30th birthday party...and entered the world of party printables! This is a very exciting place indeed, especially if you enjoy making things and like the idea of personalising cakes.

These little flags actually came from a 4th July party printable from Creature Comforts blog, which I downloaded and then added my own text using Photoshop. You have to allow plenty of time for cutting and gluing to the toothpicks (this is the fun part for me!). Thank you to John Barwood Photography for taking these great photos at the party.

Here are some lovely FREE printables that would work really well for wedding cakes/cupcakes.

Gorgeous vintage labels - download from Miss Cutie Pie's blog.

Love the little bow on the cute cake toppers - download from Little Flamingo's blog

Change the text to your names or your wedding date - download from Thirty Handmade Days blog.

Please share any links to FREE printables in the comments below. There is also a great range of editable cupcake topper designs that you can buy on Etsy!

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Five fabulous frame ideas

From table plans to kitschy dessert table trays, vintage frames have a lot of potential for practical and decorative use in your DIY wedding. Here are five fabulous frame ideas...including our own table plan made using an old frame from a charity shop, which we painted gold and placed black card inside. My painting easel came in handy to display the frame and saved us from hiring a stand for £20. And, being a budget bride I then sold the frame on afterwards to another bride and we made our money back!

Our DIY vintage inspired table plan frame

DIY Wedding Chalkboard -

DIY Vintage Frame Table Numbers -

Framed floral fabric table plan - Little Miss Wedding's blog

DIY Framed Dessert Table Trays -

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Vintage style ice cream

July is National Ice Cream Month which reminds me of an idea we toyed with for our summer wedding... forgoing a formal dessert in favour of ice cream cones! A vintage ice cream bicycle or ice cream van would be such a novelty for wedding guests! It turned out for us that we needed to save some pennies and our wedding cake was dessert afterall...but I still love this ideas for the warmer months.

 Photos are of Icicle Tricycle

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Thrifty Nifty Flowers on a budget

'Handmade not High Street' is the ethos of The Craft Hub, a Crafty Collective for Devon, based in Exeter.

The Craft Hub runs modern, vibrant and seasonal craft fairs, showcasing products from some of the best of Devon's Handmaking Talent. They run pub nights teaching fun and engaging workshops called Cr'After Dark, inspiring others to join the handmade movement. In the May workshop they made Crafty Corsages (as seen above).

The next workshop on 15th June is set to be a flowery fantasia! Thrifty Nifty Flowers on a budget workshop with Sarah Pepper, a highly experienced florist, will be teaching how to flower arrange on a budget, and how to use old and obscure treasured things in the home as vases for your floral creations.

Their craft fairs are a great place to find unique handmade quality crafts and get inspired too. Whether it's wedding favours, corsages, candles, bunting, flowers or jewellery (to name a few) the Craft Hub can inspire all you DIY brides out there.

After I went to one of their fairs in Topsham I was inspired to pick up my knitting again, and now we have a weekly knitting circle at work!

Don't miss the next fair on Fathers' Day, Sunday 19th June 2011, Matthews Hall in Topsham.

Friday, 6 May 2011

Cath Kidston inspired bunting

Okay, so I'm a little late for getting this post up in time for Royal Wedding street parties, but I hope this is useful for your own weddings! For me, bunting is one of those quintessential British things, and since I moved to the South West I have enjoyed seeing a lot of it!

We decided to have bunting at our wedding as decoration for our drinks reception, and after seeing how much it costs to buy, Mum kindly offered to make it (and she did such a beautiful job!). Being a big Cath Kidston fan I chose fabrics that resembled her vintage inspired prints and colours in red, green and florals - that fitted in with our overall colour theme...and could also be used for future parties!

I bought a Cath Kidston floral pattern and red polkadot from Ebay at a good price (NB: most pieces are sold as fat quarters for quilting which is sized 18" x 21"). I also bought a metre (which goes a long way for bunting) of a green polka and a floral pattern from the Exeter Fabric Centre. They have two shops close to each other - I found the style I wanted in the Curtain/Haberdashery shop, and bunting ribbon in dress fabrics shop.

On the day after the wedding we re-used the bunting to decorate the marquee for our post-wedding afternoon cream tea party! And then again recently in our garden for our Royal Wedding tea party!

If you're thinking of making your own bunting you might find Folksy's article Tips for making bunting useful!

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Handmade choccys

Sticking with the theme of handmade and British (from my Royal Wedding Party post) I couldn't resist sharing this book: Miss Hope's Chocolate Box which is selling for a special price of only £3.99 on the Book People website. Handmade choccys or cakes would make wedding favours or sweet buffets all the more special.
'Hope and Greenwood is the delightful chain of shops that celebrate the best of British confectionery. In this indulgent look at chocolate, owner Miss Hope presents fifty of her favourite recipes. From passion fruit truffles and chocolate ginger creams to sea salt caramels, there's something here to satisfy any chocoholic!'

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Congrats Kate & Wills!

We had such a fun time celebrating Kate & Will's Wedding on Friday, with a garden party along with quintessentially English party food and great company! What a beauiful bride and a wonderful wedding!

Patriotic cupcakes (I used draw-on Dr. Oetker 'Easy Writer' food colouring pens)

Any excuse to bring out the vintage china from our wedding!
Flapjack recipe by Delia.

No tea party is complete without cucumber sandwiches!

Fiona's gluten & wheat free Cherry & Almond cake.
My first attempt at scones (in basket) using Delia's guide.

Louise's Gluten free 'Earl Grey' cupcakes

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Royal Wedding Party

I remember how excited I felt a month before our wedding...but I can't even begin to imagine what Kate Middleton must be feeling today! 

Are you planning a Royal Wedding Party? I see the occassion as the perfect excuse to hang up the bunting from our wedding (handmade by Mum!).

For some party inspiration, Not on the have got some very British party accessories (image above from their latest enewsletter).

And, Kate's family business, Party Pieces, have a wide selection of 'Best of British' themed, fit for a princess!